Why You Should Vote Third-Party!
After a wearisome election season, perhaps the most tiresome in my short life in the political cosmosphere, I think it is safe to say I have heard every salient argument in favor of Mitt Romney. I have perused with great nervousness the posts of some of my political and theological heroes exhorting me to close my eyes at least one more time. I say nervousness because part of me feared they would make a compelling case. And I confess, some articles have come quite close.
I will mention at the outset that I am not anti-Republican Party. I am against the political polygamy of the Grand Old Party. The Republican Party has achieved its goal of becoming a big tent. And in doing so, she has satiated herself with many lovers.
There are still many principled leaders in the GOP: Jim Demint, Rand Paul, Ron Paul, Justin Amash, and Tom Davis. On a local level, one can find principled Republicans who have not forgotten their commitment to the Constitution, and still consider it to be relevant. These local politicians should receive our votes, support, and yard signs.
At the national level, I am afraid ideological adultery occurs with tremendous frequency. For instance, to even dispute the effectiveness of FEMA is anathema. If a giant agency does something good at any level it necessarily receives the stamp of approval, and it is added to the plethora of agencies. Never mind the tremendous failure of certain agencies on a consistent basis. If you throw a few million dollars at something, even if there are extremely incompetent people managing those monies, you will still find something to cheer. And this is how national programs and agencies work: If there is an ounce of good it overrides the pounds of bad. There is a certain inevitability about government growth that is utterly discouraging. And when candidates favor the termination of certain sacred programs they are mocked and ridiculed as radical anarchists who are in love with the suffering of the poor.
The Democrats are easy targets. They drink deeply of the fountain of guilt manipulation. Their media apologists scream with effeminate indignation at the travesty of cutting the federal budget. “How dare you kill grandma,” they ask. “How dare you…how dare you…you’re so bad!” And then the discourse descends to sophomoric level. Reason is the tactic of bullies, and at the end Democrats end up looking civilized and philanthropic.
On the other hand, Republicans have done a fair job at their mid-term exams. They do what some of us did in our college years: we cram all the nice talking points, and memorize as many lines as possible to make sure we pass the exam. If I tell my opponent he is wrong for America, or if I simply repeat it long enough, then I win the argument and the debate, and national recognition ensues. “Facts:” Those bastard little things. They only get in the way. “Conservatism:” That very flexible term that can be applied to just about anything and anyone.
But is this all we got? Rhetorical brownie points versus guilt manipulators? Again I don’t oppose the entirety of the Republican Party. Like the mainline churches there are some brave souls trying to keep the flames of orthodoxy going. But the tsunami is powerful, weighty, and destructive. And so their bold words fall into the ground and disappear in a sea of political platitudes. These few politicians become “isolationists” in the House. They are looked upon with contempt by those who have made a living hosting lobbyists.
To this point, I have heard every version of ”this is a wasted vote argument” possible. If I happen to vote for a candidate that lines up with most of my core beliefs, then I am a perfectionist. If I vote for a third-party candidate, then I am re-electing Barack Obama. Try to rationalize that! If I mention that Mormon thing, then I have not considered deeply Luther’s mythical statement. If I talk about principle, then I am labelled a utopian. Yes, I have heard them all, and more. But I am not persuaded that this election will determine the rise of the antichrist. “This election is the most important election in my lifetime,” said a multitude of people every four years.
No. A thousand times no! A man can only take abuse for so long. The lesser of two evils is really the evil of two lessers. And that’s what we got: Two powerfully well-funded candidates who find TARP, Bernanke, and warfare the trinity of ideologies. As for me, I am ready to see big banks bankrupt. I am ready to see Bernanke go back to his Keynesian prison-house, and I am ready, to quote Shakespeare, to “see the the words of war silenced.”
So as a family we are supporting the unknown, but honest Virgil Goode of the Constitution Party. His strong Christian background coupled with a love for the Constitution make him the type of candidate worthy of our support.